Variants

Spree:Variants track the distinct properties of multiple similar products that you sell.

For example, if you sell a red mug and a green mug that have many other properties in common, you could create a single product ("Mug") with two variants.

Your "Mug" product requires an option type of "Color". Then, your "Color" option type requires two possible option values ("Red" and "Green"). Both the red and green variants can each have their own price, dimensions, and other properties.

Line items use a variant_id to associate a variant with an order. So, every product has at least one Spree::Variant, which is also the master variant .

Variants are used to define properties that are specific to the variant:

  • weight, height, width, and depth: Sets unique dimensions or weight for a variant.
  • cost_currency: Set an alternative currency for your variant.
  • cost_price: Sets the manufacturing cost for the variant (for internal use).
  • position: Sets the variant's position in the list of variants. For example, if there are two variants the position could be 1 or 2. (Administrators can set positions by drag-and-dropping any variant in the list of variants on a product's Variants tab.)
  • track_inventory: Set whether inventory should or should not be tracked for this variant. <!-- See the inventory documentation for more information -->
  • tax_category_id: Overrides the product's tax category for this variant. See the Taxation documentation for more information.

Option types

In order to create variants, you need to create option types and option values:

  • The product needs to have at least one Spree::OptionType assigned to it. For example, if you intend to offer a product in multiple colors, you could create a "Color" option type.
  • The option type requires at least one associated Spree::OptionValue to be used. For example, your "Color" option type might have ten or one hundred option values.

Administrators are able to create option types and associated option values in the backend (from the Products -> Option Types page). Then, when they add or edit products, they can add available option types to the product and option values to each variant.

Master variants

Every product has a master variant. By default, the master variant is the first variant created for a product. For example, when an administrator creates a new product using the solidus_backend interface, they are also creating the product's master variant.

When additional variants are created, they inherit the properties of the master variant until their own distinct properties are set.

Usage

The master variant is used by Spree::LineItems in two different ways:

  • If the master variant is the product's only variant or configured, then the master variant is the variant that is associated with the line item. This means that the line item uses the master variant's attributes and Spree::Price.
  • If a product has more than one variant configured, then the master variant does not provide the price and other properties to the line item. In this case, the master variant is not sellable. Instead, it is used as a template for other variants.

The master variant should be a generic template for all of your additional variants. If your product has "Color" and "Size" options, the master variant would not have a color or a size associated with it. If all of your variants are sold at the same price, however, you may want to assign a price to your master variant. See the table below for an example:

"Mug" variant Color Size Price
"Mug" variant
1 (master variant)
Color
--
Size
--
Price
$12
"Mug" variant
2
Color
Green
Size
Large
Price
$12
"Mug" variant
3
Color
Red
Size
Medium
Price
$12
"Mug" variant
4
Color
Red
Size
Large
Price
$12
"Mug" variant
5
Color
White
Size
Medium
Price
$12

Master variant methods

Master variants must be explicitly called for using the master or variants_including_master methods. For example:

Ruby
    
      Spree::Product.find(1).master
# => <Spree::Variant id: 2, is_master: true, ...>

    
  

The master variant does not appear in the list of variants accessed by the variants method.

Product images

Product images link to variants via the Spree::Image model. For more information about images, see the product images article.

Feedback

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